Ultrastretchable, Highly Transparent, Self-Adhesive, and 3D-Printable Ionic Hydrogels for Multimode Tactical Sensing

Hua Wei, Zhenwu Wang, Hua Zhang, Youju Huang*, Zongbao Wang, Yang Zhou, Ben Bin Xu*, Sami Halila, Jing Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ionic gel-based electronic devices are essential in future healthcare/biomedical applications, such as advanced diagnostics, therapeutics, physiotherapy, etc. However, considerable efforts have been devoted to integrating ultrahigh stretchability, transparency, self-adhesion, and a low-cost manufacturing process in one material for dealing with a variety of application scenarios in the real world. Here, we describe an ionically conductive hydrogel-based electronic technology by introducing charge-rich polyzwitterions into a natural polysaccharide network. The proposed hydrogel possesses ultrahigh stretchability (975%), unique optical transmittance (96.2%), and universal conformal adhesion. The bionic hydrogel electronic devices possess superior dual force/temperature sensation with high sensitivity. Moreover, we develop dedicated sensor arrays via an additive manufacturing route and demonstrate the feasibility of monitoring physical activity or analyzing the mental state of a human body based on the multichannel signal acquisition of joint bending, pulse, vocal-cord vibration, electroencephalogram, eye movement, body temperature, etc. This all-in-one strategy based on a versatile ionic hydrogel electronic platform is anticipated to open up new tactical sensing applications in smart robotics, human–machine interfaces, and wearable monitoring systems.
Original languageEnglish
JournalChemistry of Materials
Early online date3 Aug 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 3 Aug 2021


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